Scrum


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SPaMCAST 573 features our essay using a workflow to prioritize a backlog. Items on any backlog proliferate. Product backlogs used in agile and lean development approaches are no different.  Many outsiders have the mistaken notion that once on the list that that is the end of the story — let’s dissuade them of this idea.

 Gene Hughson brings his Form Follows Function column to the podcast.  Gene and I discussed his experience as an application architect. 

 Re-Read Saturday News (more…)

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I apologize for the delay in publication — ahhh the vagueries of travel!

SPaMCAST 570 features our essay on the components of good sprint goals. Sprint goals provide direction and energy, and they communicate with the outside world. A sprint goal should be a straightforward statement that a product owner should be able to craft quickly and then agree upon with a team. We provide a structure to keep goals simple and impactful.  

We will also have a visit from Susan Parente. In this installment of Susan’s Not a Scrumdamentalist column, we discuss value.  Value is core to many practices, the problem is that value is a very nebulous concept. Susan provides guidance. Continue the conversation with Susan at parente@s3-tec.com and visit her company at www.s3-tec.com (more…)

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Check out the podcast on Google Play Music
Listen on Spotify!

This week in SPaMCAST 568 marks the return of Sandeep Koorse.  Sandeep brings deep insight into the Agile mindset, passion, and experimentation. All three are required for a healthy team. Sandeep last appeared as part of SPaMCAST 511.

Sandeep is an innovative leader with over 15 years of experience in helping companies achieve higher results through a careful evaluation of their processes and their technology. Known for determining the metrics and behaviors that promote consistent excellence then sharing those values with colleagues through influence and authority. Recognized by peers for exceptional problem-solving abilities, excellent communication skills, and a passion for the community. Reach out to Sandeep at sandeep@koorse.com (more…)

On the rim of one volcano with the cone of a second in the background!

I am hiking volcanoes this week, literally! The 400+ page copy of Thinking, Fast and Slow has not been in my day pack (it is in the luggage). We will be back next week. If you are in Portland, Oregon, I hope to see you at the Pacific NW Software Quality Conference beginning October 14th through the 16th.  I will be speaking on the 15th! Register now: https://www.pnsqc.org/2019-conference/

Also, remember that I have a webinar on value stream and process flow mapping for The Great IT Professional Organization on October 22, 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM EST. The registration link is http://bit.ly/2VaFzm3  The webinar is free!  I hope you have time to be in the audience!

Sitting on mountains this week has caused me to reflect on an entry from January 1, 2015, titled, Getting Stuff Done: Daily Retrospectives.  A re-edited version follows —

Reflection is a central tenet of all Agile frameworks. Do a bit of planning, execute against that plan, then step back and reflect on what was done and how it can be done better. Reflection acts as both a capstone for a period of work and as an input into the next cycle. For example, in Scrum, each sprint culminates with the team performing a retrospective so they can learn and improve. Retrospectives have the same power whether they are team-based or done at a personal level. In personal Scrumban, performing a daily retrospective is useful to generate focus and then tuning that focus based on the day-to-day pressures and changes in direction. (more…)

So the answer is . . .

A minor update for Sprint Planning in late 2019!  At some point planning for planning needs to give way to planning.  Planning identifies a goal and helps to envision the steps needed to attain that goal. In Agile, the planning event also sends a message about the amount of work a team anticipates delivering in an iteration. While every team faces variations based on context and the work that is in front of them, a basic planning process is encapsulated in the following simple checklist. (more…)

Look up!

Sprint goals provide direction, they provide energy, and they communicate to the outside world. A sprint goal sounds like a simple, straightforward statement that a product owner should be able to craft quickly and then agree upon with a team with relative ease.  Yeah, right. Real-life is often messier. Teams spend hours – literally – to craft eloquent statements that include every business metaphor known to humankind, or just as bad, they throw together a laundry list of stories and call that a goal. Too much or too little, neither extreme is valuable.  A useful minimalist approach to sprint goals will address four major themes. They are:

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Climbing towards better sprint goals!

Sprint goals are an important tool for describing the value a team is striving to deliver. Goals can be used to rally the team and to bring the energy of disparate individuals to bear on a specific business problem.  Despite the power of the tool, sprint goals are not universally created and when they are done they are not always well done. In order to guide positive behavior, framing sprint goals so they exhibit:   (more…)

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